'A nightmare': Ontario family sleeps in car during botched $58K renovations
Published Thursday, September 28, 2023 8:10AM EDT
Ajay Sood and his family bought their dream home in Oakville this past July, but they say a contractor destroyed their house after refusing to finish the work despite being paid in advance.
"I'm living a nightmare, I'm living a nightmare, and it seems like there is no end," Sood told CTV News Toronto.
When they bought their home, Sood said they decided to upgrade the kitchen and one of the bathrooms. They found a company to do that work for $27,000.
As soon as the contractors started, Sood said they started ripping out more than they agreed to and added expenses they hadn't budgeted for.
"Without my knowledge, I came in, and my whole kitchen was gone. I said, 'Where is my kitchen? What are you doing?'" said Sood.
Despite asking the contractor to renovate just one bathroom, Sood said they gutted all three bathrooms inside the home, leaving the family without a single functioning bathroom.
"When we handed over the house to the contractor, these were washrooms, and now there are no washrooms in the house," said Sood.
Sood claims the contractor also tore up his paved driveway and stripped the wooden deck in his backyard.
"The contractor I hired didn't do nothing. Zero. He didn't do anything. He just destroyed things," Sood said.
Sood said when he asked the contractor why he was demolishing walls and floors in his home, he was told it was because the house wasn't built to code and that everything needed to be replaced.
According to Sood, the contractor said he would give him a reasonable price to complete the work.
The family said the contractor changed the codes on their door locks, locking them out of their home and forcing them to sleep in their car.
"I would just put the front seat on recline to sleep, and my wife and kid would have to sleep in the back of the car," said Sood.
The company demanded more money to finish the renovations, but Sood said when he handed over $58,000, they didn't return.
Sood hired Banga House Improvements, run by brothers Rajat Banga and Ishan Banga.
CTV News Toronto went to their home in Pickering to ask them about the renovation job, but they closed the door and didn't answer questions.
When CTV News Toronto tried calling them, they said they had no comment about Sood's renovation project.
The Sood family is still in shock over what happened. Saruchi Sood said she is concerned for her three-year-old son's well-being.
"It just seems like a big tragedy that this has happened to us, especially with a small kid, it's been unbearable," said Saruchi Sood.
"I just want my money back, and I just want my life back," Ajay Sood said.